After spawning, big females slowly drop downstream, and refurbish food for a week to ten days. Catching them during this period is nearly impossible. but keep in mind that the fish are in the recuperation stage at the same time.
When the effects of spawning finally wear off, big walleyes begin a feeding binge unrivaled at any other time. Peak fishing usually begins in early May and continues for two to three weeks. By this time, the fish have usually moved far from the tailwaters, although a few stragglers may remain. The areas where you'll find them now have one thing in common - current. Look for flowing cuts off the main channel or sandy points where current buffets the tip. Don't bother fishing deeper than 12 feet. Untipped jigs are still the best bet, but now live bait, especially nightcrawlers, comes into play. My favorite technique is anchoring and casting around the tips of sandy points. These areas often hold numbers of good-sized walleyes and drifting takes you through the fish zone too fast. Many of the big ones are taken by shore fisherman who know the right spots.
In the spring the warmest water will be close to shore. The warmest water is where the fish will be most active, so that's why we're fishing there. When fishing these shallow areas, it's important that you keep motions to a minimum. Fish in shallow water are generally spookier than they would be in deep water. Walk softly and wear light colored clothing. You want a jacket or a sweatshirt that blends in with the sky. Remember, you'll be above the fish and the sky will be the background. Dark clothing will stand out against the light background and your movements will be easily detected by the fish.
When working shallow areas to shore, especially when the water is clear, keep your cast parallel to the shore. The most active fish will be within 10 feet off shore, perhaps closer. If you cast the bait 30 feet out from the shore and retrieve it, the lure is in the most productive zone for only the last 10 feet of the cast. If you cast the bait parallel to the shore and retrieve it, it's in the fish zone all the time. This technique is very productive even later on in the summer when fishing for largemouth bass and panfish.
Several baits will take bass in the spring depending on their activity level. I like to start with a blade bait, like a Cicada or Black Flash spinnerbait. If the fish don't go along with this presentation, try a Weed Sneek or Jungle Jig tipped with a plastic trailer. These two bait types will be most productive much of the time, but my all time favorite method for taking shallow water bass is twitching a Storm Thunderstick across the surface.
Walleyes will be along the rip-rap banks and rocky shorelines in the spring because they slide in behind the rocks and rip-rap to avoid current conditions and as a staging place for ambushing their next meal. In dirty or stained water it's possible to dabble a jig tipped with a minnow or redtail chub on a long rod. Just lift and drop the jig around rocks and anything else that breaks the current.
This style of fishing that I have described is not unique to the Midwest. It can be used on any river. The essentials are to remember are current is king and the walleyes are traditionally shallow. Fishing close to the shore will frequently be most productive from mid-afternoon until temperatures cool down. That will be the only thing that is cool, your fishing will start to heat up as you fish the shoreline.